New Arrivals, Current Reading, February 3 – 10, 2013

We celebrated our wedding anniversary Saturday, a couple days early but it was a good time to go to one of our favorite restaurants. We don’t dine out often these days, so it was a treat. A caesar salad, prime rib, garlic mashed potatoes, a glass of wine and cheesecake was too much meal for us, but we managed. The next day it was back to kale soup, Greek yogurt, fiber bars, fruit and protein shakes.

NEW ARRIVALS – I bought a mammoth paperback of John O’Hara stories and another collection of graphic stories from DC. It’s yet one more of their “new 52” titles, and once again I was disappointed. It will be the last one. Titles and descriptions below the images.

Gibbsville, PA – the classic stories by John O’Hara, edited by Matthew Bruccoli [Carroll & Graf 1992 trade paper, new] – general fiction, short stories – the (almost) complete O’Hara stories about the town and the people of Gibbsville, PA. I haven’t read a single one of these stories, and though I’m a little overwhelmed with short story collections, I’ll dig into this 864 page collection soon, but not until I finish at least one of the big collections I’m already reading. I have a hunch it will take me a goodly while to get through this!

Justice League, Origins by Jeff Johns, Jim Lee [DC Comics 2012 comic-sized trade paper, new] – collects issues 1-6 of the New 52 Justice League series. As mentioned above, I found the story a disappointment, especially as I have liked Johns’ writing in the past on Flash. The artwork by Lee is as good as ever, he’s a fine artist, but over all yet another disappointing outing by DC. I won’t be buying any more.

CURRENT READING – I finished the third of Charles Gramlich’s Talera cycle. Good fun. He’s working on a fourth book, which may be available late this year or…? Also finished was Eric Wright’s Death in the Old Country, the 3rd in the Inspector Charlie Salter series. The first in that series, The Night the God’s Smiled has just popped up at the library for me and I’ll start it in a few days. 

Meanwhile I’m having a go at some of the many short story collections I have going, including a new one I pulled off the shelf a couple of days ago, A Killing Climate by Eric Wright. I’m still working away on the Black Lizard Book of Black Mask Stories, 50 in 50 by Harry Harrison, I read two more stories in The Complete Father Brown collection, and I finished another Perry Mason novel, The Case of the Perjured Parrot.

About Rick Robinson

Enjoying life in Portland, OR
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15 Responses to New Arrivals, Current Reading, February 3 – 10, 2013

  1. Bill Crider says:

    Happy anniversary, you two crazy kids!

  2. A happy anniversary to ou guys from me also.

    I liked Charles’ Talera cycle when I read it a few years back. Look forward to the next one.

  3. Jeff Meyerson says:

    Happy Anniversary. That dinner sounds a lot better than kale soup, that’s for sure.

    I’m sure George and others will second me saying you cannot go wrong with that O’Hara collection. The later stories tend to be the longer ones – some are quite long – but I’m sure you’ll enjoy it once you get to it.

    I’m reading a couple of short story collections as ebooks – I finished one, L. J. Washburn’s Hallam Collection, four longish but easy to read tales of cowboy turned Pinkerton turned silent movie stuntman Lucas Hallam. I also read the next of Lee Goldberg’s Monk books, Mr. Monk in Outer Space, which I found somewhat less fun than the previous entries despite the Star Trek parody.

  4. Happy Anniversary!

    Jeff is right about John O’Hara’s GIBBSVILLE, PA. Great stories! I’m completely against the DC “reimagining” of their classic characters. I bought a bunch of DC classic collections when BORDERS was going out of business. I have enough DC material to keep me busy for years. You’ll have more Perry Masons to read when my bag of books arrives later this week.

  5. Happy Anniversary and Congratulations to both of you! I haven’t read many graphic novels but there’s something about Origins, in books and films, that doesn’t click.

  6. Happy anniversary! I have that O’Hara collection, but I discovered the other day that it’s a later edition with some of the stories taken out, so I’m not going to read it. I’d rather hunt up the complete collection when I’m ready. DC has rebooted itself completely past the point of no return as far as I’m concerned, and I hate to say that because I have a good friend who works there. The library had a hardback collection of the first eight issues of the new ACTION COMICS, so I checked it out and tried to read it. I didn’t make it through one issue. Just couldn’t work up any interest in it. A lot of people complain about Marvel, but it’s still the same universe it was in 1961, and that counts for something with me.

  7. Happy Anniversary to you and Barbara!!! The meal sounds delicious and was a much deserved break.

    Sorry the DC book was disappointing. Its been a long time since I’ve purchased, or read for that matter, a superhero-based comic or graphic novel. I have enjoyed some in the past but they aren’t my favorite.

    I’ve been reading a lot of short fiction myself, both in the monthly genre mags I subscribe to and the various collections I either owned already or picked up recently. I have always enjoyed short fiction but don’t make enough time for it and I am trying to correct that this year by giving myself permission to just dive in.

  8. Richard says:

    Thank you, everyone, for the anniversary congrats, they are greatly appreciated.

    I have 5 short story collections under way now, so the O’Hara will have to wait.

    James, if 860 + pages isn’t enough O’Hara for me, I’ll be amazed.

  9. Patti Abbott says:

    Bought a box worth of books at the local library here but they are already packed and mailed back to Michigan. One of them was BULL DRUMMOND, THE RANGER, Ace Atkins, OUTRAGE, Iniadson, SWAMPLANDIA, Karen Russell and about half a dozen more.

  10. Patti Abbott says:

    Oh and Happy Anniversary!!! and I crave the O’Hara stories. Will look for them at my library.

  11. Richard says:

    Patti, I’ll be interested in your opinions of Swamplandia. I heard a half-hour show on it on PBS almost a year ago, and there were mixed reviews.

  12. Jeff Meyerson says:

    I know Bill Crider is a big fan of Swamplandia which will not surprise you at all.

  13. I liked the first half of SWAMPLANDIA. I thought the book went off the rails at the end.

  14. Patti Abbott says:

    Phil is reading it now. I’ll let you know.

  15. delewis1 says:

    I read DC’s 52 miniseries a few years ago, and it warn’t bad, but this new 52 Reboot looks like a colossal waste of time and other people’s money. I checked a big fat hardcover out of the library and checked it right back in. Good news about a Talera Vol. 4, though.

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